This week I am absolutely delighted to hand over my blog in its entirety to our fabulous Form 8. It’s a little longer than normal, but I hope you enjoy reading it!
An Academic English lecture took place in the hall on Monday afternoon. This covered classes Reception to Form 8’s current and future learning. Mrs Sleightholme, head of junior prep, started the afternoon with a talk on phonics and phonics terminology. Phonics are the building blocks to reading and play a big part in English for forms Reception to Form 2. Some fun online games were also given to help the junior students keep up the great work!
This was followed by Mrs Moss, Academic Deputy Head, who talked to us about The Write Stuff; a new learning tool being used across the school in English. The Write Stuff presents stepping stones to improving students’ skills in English: developing sentences; advancing levels of detail; creating depth description and more. This results in significant progression in fictional writing and poetry (while, also extremely importantly, keeping learning fun and imaginative at the same time).
Mrs Fernley, our Head of English, then informed us on some recent events and activities the students have been part of – this includes: Form 8’s poetry reading at the Holocaust Memorial Day event; a debate held by the Rotary Club; a trip to The Globe Theatre; the school’s own Shakespeare production; creative writing competitions; past and upcoming visits from authors and – of course – World Book Day, promoting reading across the school.
Finally, some of the Form 8 debating team, Lucy, Mark and Alex, discussed whether we, as a country, should or should not put a ban on animal farming. The afternoon’s event was brought to a close with hot drinks and a choice of many different delicious looking cakes – kindly prepared by our kitchen staff.
Currently, Forms 1-7 are participating in LAMDA. LAMDA is an examination given where you showcase your ability in the field of dramatic art. Children are given a poem to perform to the LAMDA examiner; they are judged based against criteria such as: understanding of the poem and/or character, clarity when speaking, ability to speak from memory etc. The younger children are performing plays such as the tiger that came to tea, while the year 7s are performing more challenging pieces such as an assortment of Shakespeare extracts from many of his most successful plays, such as Macbeth and The Tempest.
We talked to some of the pupils before and after their exams and these were some of the emotions: confident, nervous, not nervous, happy after and a bit disappointed.
LAMDA is a great experience for children as it helps develop many skills providing a broader vocabulary, higher fluency when reading, improved English language skills and many more! Some of the benefits of the LAMDA exams are that they give life lesson to students like talking in public or talking in class and to help with overall confidence. It also gives the students an opportunity to experience speaking under pressure which will be a useful tool to have in the future.
By Mark and Fred
As for our play, Moana, our actors have now learnt all their lines, rehearsed all scenes, the songs have been completed with actions and everybody knows where they are meant to be on stage. Parents were even invited to see a sneak peek and finally the boat has been finished! Our teachers have been working ever so hard on the performance, the Form 7s have been making their own masks for Moana and Mrs. Saines has been a huge help by creating Te Fiti’s costume, creating fish; helping the Form 7s with their masks and Maui’s shark, bug and hawk for when he is able to shape shift! Mrs. Nolan-Stone has been teaching the school the songs, actions and where they need to stand. As for the music, some of the Form 8s have been learning the drumming for some of the songs in Moana. This has been going very well and they will join in rehearsals soon.
By Carolina and Rosie
On Wednesday, the U13 Sunninghill A team played a tough, competitive hockey game at Dumpton School. It was a close-fought battle, but in the end, Dumpton came out 2-1 on top. We were sad to lose, but we had to congratulate our opponents for their impressive display of skills and for giving us a fun and challenging encounter.
The game started well and both teams’ skills matched each other’s. There was a lot of attacking play from both sides but no rewards until Dumpton hit an impressive shot that sadly ended up making it across the goal line. This didn’t affect our spirits much though, and the game continued apace. Both sides were attacking well with plenty of chances, but Sunninghill just couldn’t seem to finish any shots in the goal. Dumpton seized another chance and hit an impressive shot that travelled in mid-air. Despite a valiant effort from the goalkeeper and defence, it managed to find its way into our net. The half-time whistle blew, and we were shocked and slightly irritated to be two goals down.
We weren’t beaten yet though. We wanted at least one goal to prove that we were worthy opponents and with those determined thoughts in our head the second half began. We started with a fizz, immediately setting up an attack on the goal. The ball ended up with Tom and he saw his chance. He hit a well-placed, powerful shot that landed resoundingly in the opposition’s goal. Sunninghill had a brief celebration but had to get back to the game quickly. The game continued with both teams attacking and defending astonishingly well. The defences were particularly strong, as no team proved to be able to get through to goal again. There were many attempts, but it just wasn’t enough. The full-time whistle blew, and defeat was accepted. We exchanged three cheers and left to have match tea.
Dumpton were a great team, but some pupils speculated that if the game had gone on a little longer it would have resulted in a draw or a win for SPS as we were getting stronger all the time and finding more and more chances. That is obviously debatable, but who knows. Despite our loss, we were happy to hear that the other U12 Sunninghill team played an excellent game and won 8-0.
Flying start is going really well. There are four different teams and all of the teams have made a glider, which will be competing at the Yeovil Fleet Air Arm Museum next Thursday against other local schools. These teams are firstly The Quirky Pigeons: Freddy, Alex and Archie. The second team are Kentucky Flying Chickens: Mark, Charlie and Felix. The third team are The Phantom: Fred, Maggie and Flora and the final team are The Ravens: Lucy, Carolina and Rosie.
By Freddy H and Flora
On Thursday, children and teachers alike were dressed up in lots of different costumes. Why you might ask? Well it was World Book Day! A special Thursday assembly was held to celebrate the event and it was amazing to see all the students dressed up in all their fabulous outfits. The assembly started with a few Form 8s reading an excerpt from different books and after that Mr. Newberry read an extract from Winnie the Pooh which taught everyone a lesson about friendship. Afterwards the real fun began when each class was called up to do a fabulous catwalk. Each class walked around the hall and everyone was excited to see each other’s costumes that they had put so much effort and thought into. After that had finished a handful of winners were selected to receive a book token prize because of their costumes. The winners (including myself with my Sherlock Holmes outfit) were all happy to receive the prizes and the assembly ended there.
After an action-packed World Book Day, it was all topped off with a banquet for Nursery to Form 4. It all started off with a ‘grand’ dance entrance from Forms 1-2, that they had learnt in PE. As they tucked into their well-earned snacks, we celebrated the 15th year of banqueting. This was the first time it was done on World Book Day, and the number of children attending has grown every year.
After the feast we all had a jokes and riddles session, (some worse than others) some of which being:
‘What did the dinosaur say when playing hide and seek?’
‘What do you call an exploding monkey?’
The entire event was topped off by another dance from reception. Overall, it was a great event, and we think everyone had a lot of fun!
By Archie and Alex
This Friday morning, everyone from Nursery to Form 8 had the opportunity to watch the amazing Hobgoblin Theatre. They performed “The Greatest Fairy Tale of All Time.” They made all the children laugh and reminded us of the importance of your imagination. Thank you, Hobgoblin Theatre, for the stellar performance!
By Charlie and Maggie
AN INSPECTOR CALLS
An Interview the Head Inspector
This week in school we have had a visit from the Independent Schools Inspectorate team. And some of our form eight students have had the opportunity to have an interview with the head inspector – Mrs. Cavanagh. Mrs. Cavanagh started as a teacher at a school in Scotland, after this she pursued her goal and became head at an all-girls school in North London she stayed in this position for 18 years and then became an inspector on the side. Still enjoying this role, she decided to retire as a head teacher and take up her role as an inspector full time.
Mrs. Cavanagh still looks back fondly at her role as a teacher, “Teaching is all a part of one great act …helping children reach their full potential and achieve their goals”. “However,” she says, “being an inspector is truly a great job with responsibility; once again watching children thrive and accomplish in their school environment”.
After spending Tuesday to Thursday at our school, Mrs. Cavanagh and her fellow inspector team have stated that “they have enjoyed seeing our school, all the amazing learning the children take part in, experiencing the magic of some World Book Day fun and of course the brilliant lunch!”
The children have also enjoyed sharing their work and day-to-day school life with the inspector team.
By Lucy and Charlie
Thanks for reading the Form 8 blog! We hope you enjoyed it!